“I don’t want to go home to him,” I sobbed to my mum.
Nope, I wasn’t referring to a friend who was grinding my gears, or even an ex desperate to make amends. I’d forgive you for thinking so.
Well, me. It’s not an easy confession to make. And certainly not one I make lightly.
But, whether we like to admit it or not, we all have moments when we wish we could take our mum hat off and bury our face in a pillow for an unspecified period of time.
Yep, being a mum makes my soul sing. But sometimes that tune falls flat. It’s harder than any parenting manual warned or well-meaning friend quipped when you announced you were expecting.
It tests you in a way no one could possibly prepare you for; emotionally, physically, spiritually, pushing you to your limits in every sense.
So, let me take you back. Allow me to explain how I reached the point of wishing I was anywhere but home, and watch me attempt to dial down the judgement I can feel searing my skin before the overwhelming urge to delete everything I’ve written kicks in, and I revert back to belting “everything’s amazing!” in that faux sing-song tune I’ve perfected every time someone (usually without children) enthusiastically asks me “how is everything going!!!???”
Ollie has been… difficult. To say the least. A melting pot of temper and tantrums, and because I’m managing this gig solo, guess who morphs into the perfect punching bag? Yep, mum.
Every meal time is a battle. Every time I try to play with him, love him, cuddle him, tears shortly follow. Swimming lessons, his favourite past time, leave my body bruised and battered.
“I never see him smile anymore,” I cry.
“I’m sure everything’s fine,” his father responds.
“He’s just going through a leap,” the maternal health nurse reassures me.
“But maybe you should get him checked out by the doctor just in case.”